Corpun file 23737
The Bemidji Daily Pioneer, Bemidji, Minnesota, 11 March 1911, p.2
Not Like Mother Used to Spank.
Click to enlarge
Superintendent Whittier of the Red Wing Training School, at
the public hearing now being held to investigate charges of
cruelty, admits, as does [sic] even some members of the
board of control, that it is a practice to whip boy inmates.
The superintendent lays great stress on the word
"spanking" and has repeatedly told the committee that
it was done as near like "mother used to do it" as
possible, while one member of the board of control, who knew
corporal punishment was being inflicted, said it was the same
sort of whipping as was "commonly used in our public schools
and other institutions and at home."
Evidence has been offered and its truthfulness admitted by Mr.
Whittier that boys have been tied over a contrivance after their
backs had been bared and a wet towel applied and a strong man,
armed with a leather lash 22 inches in length, has applied many
Now there are not many mothers in the land, even though their
boys be the most unruly, who are going to admit that they have
ever administered any such a beating and as a matter of fact, as
Mr. Whittier probably knows, mother's method usually consists of
a half dozen spats with a slipper or hair brush and then not on
boys who have reached the ages of those sent to Red Wing.
Likewise, it is just as ridiculous to say that such methods are
pursued in our public schools. As a matter of fact, there is
probably just one place in the state of Minnesota where flogging
is made a practice and one of the established forms of discipline
and that is at the Red Wing Training School.
As the investigation proceeds the public is becoming more and
more convinced that the Red Wing institution has not been all
that should be and that former Senator Stephens is entitled to
much credit in performing the distasteful task of causing the
abuses to be shown up.
Follow-up: 7 April 1911 - Committee Makes Report: Those Who Had Charge of Red Wing Investigation Want Whittier Discharged.
About this website
Search this site
Country files: CP in US reformatories
External links: Reformatory corporal punishment
Archive up to 1975: USA